THE FRIEND WHO STICKS CLOSER THAN A BROTHER
--IN THE END ONLY THE MOTHER AND FRIEND REMAINED--
The neighborhood where my family lives is pretty close knit.
Most of the neighbors have lived in their homes over ten years.
The kids know each other and play together often.
Our neighbors across the street have one son who is eight years old.
Same age as our youngest son.
Last weekend, our neighbors came over for a brief visit with their son. During the visit, their son lamented not having a sibling to play with at home like our children had.
The kids were no longer going out to play with their friends like they used to due to social distancing rules enacted in our county.
My cousin, who happened to be visiting us for a few weeks from out of town heard the complaint my friend’s son made regarding his lack of a sibling.
My cousin who I have always considered a master story teller wasted no time in telling my neighbor’s son a story to assuage his pain of not having a sibling to play with at home.
My cousin began by telling the young boy that friends could be just as close as family.
Sometimes even closer than blood relatives.
He told the boy about a man who lived a long time ago.
The man had siblings but his siblings were not interested in anything the man did.
The man was alone a lot of times even though he had siblings, so he found friends who were willing to help him with everything he wanted to do.
The man found twelve friends to help him since his own family was not really interested in his affairs.
Out of the twelve friends the man found to be around him, one of them stuck closer to him even more than a brother.
This friend was always with the man everywhere he went and never left his side.
One day, the man was falsely accused of crimes he did not commit by some jealous hypocrites who lived in his city.
It was a horrible situation and the man was publicly humiliated and beaten.
The whole town turned against the man because of the lies the hypocrites leveled against him.
Anyone who was found to be related to the man or close to him was also treated unkindly and disrespectfully by people who lived in the city.
Things were really bad for the man.
His family was not there to support him in his time of need.
His friends also ran away to escape the bad treatment from the city people.
Only the man’s mother and one of his twelve friends, the one who always stayed close to him, remained by his side throughout his humiliation by the city people.
The man saw how much his friend loved him throughout his troubles so he adopted his friend and made him his brother.
The man told his mother to take his friend as her son and told his friend to take his mother as his own mother.
His friend did exactly that.
The morale of the story according to my cousin:
You can always make your friend your brother, but it is not every time you can make your brother your friend.
When my cousin concluded his story, I saw a big smile on the eight year old boy’s face.
The little boy quickly asked, “so if I find a very good friend, does that mean I will be ok without a brother or sister?”
My cousin answered, “You are sure right. Just find a friend who sticks closer than a brother and you will be a very lucky man.
Luckier than a man with many brothers and sisters.”